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  1. #1

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    Sales of new darkroom equipment to private buyers compared to institutional sales

    APUG posts concerned with setting up new darkrooms have piqued my interest in how much new darkroom equipment is sold to private or small business buyers as compared to institutional (colleges or universities) or corporate sales. Any informed speculation or knowledge?

    Tom.

  2. #2
    ozphoto's Avatar
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    Tom,
    I don't have a figure with regards to this, however, earlier this year, my local store had an incredible number of enlargers ordered for a school. They were installing traditional darkrooms for the students, in conjunction with the digital ones already in use.

    I was extremely surprised, as prior to this, they had a surplus of enlargers from institutions that were doing the exact opposite! So many enlargers, they were running low on floorspace, in fact if I remember correctly, they were giving away some very simple 35mm enlargers if you purchased an 8x10" easel, just to clear them out.

    Would be interesting to know - hope somebody can give further details to all of us.

    - Nanette
    www.nanettereid.com

  3. #3

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    Nanette,

    Interesting. Perhaps sales such as these are somewhat hidden from the online community as the purchasers are not online writing about their new darkrooms, usage etc.?

    Tom.

  4. #4
    ozphoto's Avatar
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    Quite possible, however I remember when I started high school (80s) they shut the darkrooms there the year I started. And this was well before digital. I studied in college in the 90s and when I started they used all analog, just starting digital the year I left (2000). In 2003 the darkrooms were barely used - today the C41 machine they purchased new is defunct and has been sold along with the enlargers and print processor. Everything the students do now is digital - Canon full-frame cameras, PS4 on a brand new Mac and output on Epson A3 printers.

    Seems the "art" of photography is going to be lost on quite a few new photographers, however it was heartening to learn that a colleague's friend was hired to shoot for a magazine in France, quite simply because he uses film! 120 film and natural light - 10 days later he had a nice collection of images and a good contact for future work.

    They will be quite the "fish out of water" should a potential client request film for their project (I've just been asked to shoot a project using both; the film side to be B&W - my favorite film medium.)

    A pity these purchases aren't discussed online further - might help the companies increase their analog sales further?


    - Nanette
    www.nanettereid.com

  5. #5

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    Seems the "art" of photography is going to be lost on quite a few new photographers
    This is a very good point, the tangibility of working in a darkroom compared to the computer makes the process completely different. Actually, the darkroom is a good place to reinforce concepts directly related to Photoshop, and how ideas in Photoshop build on the analogue domain. especially with regard to something like 'Curves'.

    A pity these purchases aren't discussed online further - might help the companies increase their analog sales further?
    Jobo published profiles in the past of people who use their products, along with technical articles etc. - I think these are still available online. http://www.jobo.com/jobo_service_analog/jq/ - thanks to APUG user 'Delphine' for getting Jobo to put these articles back online.

    Tom.

  6. #6
    RH Designs's Avatar
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    If it helps I can tell you almost all our sales are to private individuals (or one-man businesses) and it's been that way since we started in 1994. An increasing number recently have been to people starting in the darkroom after becoming disenchanted with digital.
    Regards,
    Richard.

    RH Designs - My Photography

  7. #7

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    I'm having the crazy notion of possibly buying a new enlarger and easel...

  8. #8
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    My office is about 10 blocks from Arkay/Regal and I go there quite a bit. They say that sales to schools of traditional darkroom equipment is up compared to the earlier part of the decade...Evan Clarke

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by RH Designs View Post
    If it helps I can tell you almost all our sales are to private individuals (or one-man businesses)
    Ditto here.

    Where I have had customers try and convince a school to use f-stop timers and meters they are either strapped for cash or reluctant about (er, dead set against) trying anything new.

    When I have called on photography departments at local colleges the reception would have been warmer if I had been proposing a symposium on the positive aspects of pederasty.
    DARKROOM AUTOMATION
    f-Stop Timers - Enlarging Meters
    http://www.darkroomautomation.com/da-main.htm

  10. #10

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    When I have called on photography departments at local colleges the reception would have been warmer if I had been proposing a symposium on the positive aspects of pederasty.
    Because of some socialist bias against private enterprise?

    Tom.

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